Our Board of Trustees

There are 12 Trustees appointed by the Minister of Finance. They are selected for their professional or community-based experience, and must live within the Trust’s region.  Appointments are usually for a four-year period. 

For information on how to become a Trustee, click here


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Georgina Morrison comes from rural Tararua, and resides on her husband’s family dairy farm near Pahiatua, with their two young children.

Georgina studied at Massey University, and is currently the Executive Officer for Environment Hubs Aotearoa, and a facilitator for Enviroschools in Tararua and Palmerston North. She holds governance roles at Pukaha Mt Bruce and Pahiatua Primary School.

“I enjoy being part of an organisation that truly seeks to support and empower communities from the grassroots up.”

TRUSTEE-Deputy chair

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Troy was elected to Eastern and Central Community Trust Board in August 2021, representing the Horowhenua region.

Troy has over 25 years’ experience in the finance and banking industry in both New Zealand and the UK dealing with complex financial instruments, as well as an established executive leadership career in agribusiness management and governance of iwi farming and commercial property interests.

In 2013-2014, he acted as a member of the Commercial Negotiations Advisor for the interests of all Ngäti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa-Tämaki Nui a Rua in its Treaty of Waitangi settlement negotiations with the Crown and has been an active Trustee of Tahamata Incorporation, an Iwi owned Dairy Farming Business located in the Horowhenua District, since 2003.

Troy holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree in AgriBusiness from Lincoln University, with additional banking qualifications from the ASX and NZX. He is a member of the NZ Institute of Directors.

John Bunny

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John lives in Masterton and is married to Judi. They have four children and eleven grandchildren.

After 44 years of working in the insurance and financial services sectors which entailed looking after clients all over New Zealand, John sold his agencies and retired from business.

John continues to work and volunteer in Masterton and the wider Wairarapa community, serving on various Government Departments, Boards, Trusts & other organisations.

John commented “I am delighted to have been appointed as an ECCT Trustee as I know it will further enhance the ability of this Trust, by working with others, to better the lives of those who live in our communities

Mark Cleary
Hawke's Bay

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Born in Fairlie, Mark moved to Auckland where he completed secondary and tertiary education.

As a trained History and English teacher he moved to Hawkes Bay in 1979 and along with wife Barbara spent the next 30 years teaching and leading in a number of local schools.

During the 1990s Mark gained expertise in dealing with bullying behaviour, working closely with the Police and schools to develop effective approaches to reducing this.

In 2004 he led the voluntary merger of Colenso High and Wycliffe Intermediate schools to form William Colenso College.

Between 2008 and 2018 Mark worked internationally providing management consultancy services with a particular focus on Change, Project, Enterprise and Strategic Management in a range of educational and government settings.

“I’m excited to be involved with the Eastern and Central Community Trust as my heart has always been in supporting the growth of our local communities” Mark says.


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I was raised in Levin and attended Taitoko Primary School, Levin Intermediate & Waiopehu College. After leaving College at 15, I completed a Butchery Apprenticeship and worked as a Butcher for several years before moving into a sports development role in the community.

Having played multiple sports all my life and in particular rugby, I then embarked on a 13-year overseas journey of playing professional and semi-professional rugby in several countries. I was privileged to see a significant part of the world and experience many different cultures during these formative years. During this journey I furthered my work in community-based non-for-profit industries, focusing in particular on working with under privileged groups to access resources and facilities for their causes.

Upon returning to New Zealand, I took up the role of Chief Executive Officer for the Horowhenua Kapiti Rugby Football Union, a role I love and have held for 14 years. I am involved in several community groups that focus on driving positive outcomes for our community. Having come from a very humble background struggling to make ends meet, I have a passion to assist where I can to help others through that cycle.

I have three amazing sons Nicholas, Oliver & Jack, and I’m incredibly lucky to have my darling Esta as my Wife. I am a lifelong learner; through Massey University I have obtained a Graduate Diploma in Business Studies and am currently working through an Executive Masters in Business Administration.

I am thrilled to be appointed a Trustee for the Eastern and Central Community Trust; I am very excited to be able to assist in the amazing outcomes that ECCT helps to provide for so many communities. I have seen first-hand the great work done by ECCT, and this aligns very closely with my own personal beliefs in helping the community.


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Ko Hikurangi te maunga
Ko Waiapu te awa
Ko Ngāti Porou te iwi
Ko Te Whānau a Tarahauiti, Te Whānau a Hunaara, me Te Whānau a Rerewa ōku hapū
Ko Mātahi o Te Tau me Hinepare ōku marae

Ko Rongowhakaata, Te Aitanga a Mahaki, me Ngāi Tahu hoki ōku iwi.

Rena was appointed to the Eastern & Central Community Trust Board in September 2020.

Rena grew up on the East Coast – on whānau land at the East Cape Lighthouse, Te Araroa.

After almost 20 years in Wellington, Rena and her husband, Stefan, brought their four children back to Gisborne in 2017.

Rena is currently the Manager of the Tairāwhiti Environment Centre, which is a community organisation focused on environmental education, waste minimisation, and biodiversity.  Her professional background includes the sustainable business, environmental not-for-profits and Māori heritage sectors.

Underpinning Rena’s personal and professional life are her core values of whanaungatanga, accountability, inclusion and aroha, which guide and inform her commitment to whānau, hapū, iwi, community and environment.

“I believe that communities understand best what works for them and that community-led solutions have the best chance of creating real value and change.

“I am proud to be part of ECCT as it is an organisation that places community connection and collaboration at the heart of its work.”

Palmerston North

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Gail was appointed to the Eastern and Central Community Trust Board in September 2020.

Gail has a background in both community development, social services and governance.

A commitment and interest in social justice and equitable outcomes for communities has led her to work voluntarily with former refugee communities, assisting them to become incorporated societies and governors, so they have legal entities as vehicles to achieve their aspirations.

Gail was a board member and subsequently Chair of the Workbridge Board for eight years before recently being appointed Chair of the MidCentral District Health Board Consumer Council.

Gail, who has a partner and two adult sons, says she is keen to support the efforts of communities to fulfill their own dreams and projects through the equitable allocation of resources.

Hayden Swann

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Ngāti Porou, Te Aitanga a Mahaki, Rongowhakaata, Ngai Tai.

As a career educator and school Principal I have an enduring passion for Rangatahi to be the best they can be. Our future is in the hands of our Rangatira mo apopo, our leaders of tomorrow.

I have been involved in both volunteer community organisations and high level governance for 20 years. My Directorship roles include Strategic Planning and thinking, compliance with financial and legal regulations. Sector groups include farming, forestry, tourism, housing, climate change and managing share investment portfolios.

I am a Chartered Member of the IoD. In my Community roles I am Chair of the Poverty Bay Rugby Union, Executive Committee for the A&P Association, and former Chair of the Turanganui Schools Māori Cultural (Kapa Haka) Festival.  These roles give me a good appreciation and understanding for our Community aspirations socially, culturally and from a sporting, health and well being perspective.

I stand on the shoulders of my ancestors in bringing a matauranga perspective to discussions and frameworks including Te Taiao - kaitiakitanga of the environment and limiting the impacts of climate change. I also have a passion for uplifting people through education, housing, health & sport, culture and having inclusive conversations of what is needed.


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Ko Ngāti Porou, Ngāi Tūhoe me Ngāti Awa nga iwi

Ko Hikurangi, Taiarahia me Putauaki nga maunga

Ko Waiapu, Ohinemataroa me Rangitaiki nga awa

Ko Rongohaere, Te Rewarewa me Uiraroa nga marae

Ko Te Aitanga a Mate, Te Mahurehure me Ngai Tama Wera nga hapu

Ko Juanita Whitiaira Timutimu ahau.

Whiti was raised in the Eastern Bay of Plenty in Ruatoki and has been living and working in Tairāwhiti since 2003. She and her wife Kristin live in Manutuke with daughter Maia who is 15.

Whiti works in the New Zealand Police and has spent 14 years working with whanau, hapu and iwi across the country.

In her personal time she is a ‘Social Entrepreneur’ and spends the majority of her time investing in the potential of others by creating solutions for issues in communities.

She has three mentoring programmes aimed at supporting young people (at risk school kids, LGBTQI youth, and children with a parent in prison).

Her passion is with creating long-term, sustainable solutions for whānau, hapū, iwi and communities.

“I feel privileged to be a part of the trust and look forward to the ‘transformation’ our funding will make for all communities.”

Hawke’s Bay

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(Ngāti Rākaipaaka, Ngāti Kahungunu ki Heretaunga)

Levi was born and bred in Hastings, and maintains his Mum’s whakapapa to Ngā Nuhaka in Wairoa. He has a degree in sociology and development studies from Victoria University of Wellington, and returned to the region in 2017 to focus on providing opportunities for others, establishing new projects, and finding innovative and sustainable ways to deliver positive, intergenerational impact within Hawke’s Bay.

A company director and mentor, Levi serves on several government-appointed boards providing a youth perspective, as well as actively engaging with young people to build networks of knowledge and support.

“My drive for this mahi is to help create the best opportunities for our young people, growing and supporting the next generation of movers and shakers to build on the progress made up to this point. Alongside this, I work to address the asking and bringing of our rangatahi into these spaces, without the appropriate environment. This means ensuring the systems, supports, culture and processes are all conducive to allowing them to thrive within that space, and to what is being asked of them.” 

Central Hawke’s Bay

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Josie was appointed to Eastern and Central Trust in August 2021.

Born and educated in Gisborne, Josie studied and taught at Massey University in the Department of Business Studies. She is a qualified accountant and a Chartered Member of the Institute of Directors.

Since 1980 she has lived in Porangahau, Central Hawke’s Bay, farming in partnership with her husband, Donald.

Josie previously served on the Central Hawke’s Bay Power Consumers Trust as the appointee of the Central Hawke’s Bay District Council, and as a Director of Centralines Ltd. She is presently on the Hawke’s Bay Regional Board of Hohepa Homes.

Josie has been involved with a broad spectrum of community organisations as Treasurer or Honorary Auditor. She understands the value of grassroots community organisations in the social fabric of Aotearoa. And she knows how hard it can be to find the money that makes solutions possible.

“It’s a huge privilege to support the supporters – the heart of our community.”